Electric Dreams

An Excerpt From The Lucid Dream Exchange

Past Lives in Poetry
by Linda Lane Magallón

Lucy Gillis

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Gillis, Lucy (2004, May). An Excerpt From The Lucid Dream Exchange:  Past Lives in Poetry by Linda Lane Magallón. Electric Dreams 11(5).

"I was impressed by the creativity that can be released by having a lucid dream." -- Linda Lane Magallon

In LDE 30 Linda Magallon presented an excellent example of the creative power of lucid dreaming with her spontaneously produced "Past Lives in Poetry."

Past Lives in Poetry
(c) 2004 Linda Lane Magallón

"Make an effort to remember. Or, failing that, invent."
The women in Les Guerilleres

When I first had lucid dreams, there wasn't much written on the subject. Instead, there was a fair amount of information on the out-of-body experience. After trying, time after time, to have a traditional OBE, I had become very frustrated. So I went to the source: I asked my dreams for guidance. Then I had a lucid dream, but it only served to confuse me.

Hilary, 9/1/83

At the edge of sleep, in the hypnogogic state, I request guidance. I see a clown-like face in a magic mirror. It changes to a woman with dark brown hair who is wearing a cap with a feather. She seems to be riding inside a coach or carriage lined with silk material (circa Robin Hood or Three Musketeers). I am drawn into the scene enough to feel the motion of the coach, bumping over rocks, at the speed of a horse at full gallop. The sensation is very vivid. "What is your name?" I ask. There is no response, but something prompts me to ask her, "Hilary?" I think, good, it's a male/female name. At this, she laughs soundlessly. I peer closely at her face and ask her, "Why can't I have an out-of-body experience?" She pulls the cap down over her face and turns into a flat oval shape.

I wrote down the dream and sat puzzling over it. Then I was inspired to put pen to paper. This is one of the few times that a poem virtually wrote itself. It just gushed out of me, like the sudden exodus of some long pent-up energy. And, who knows? Maybe the roots of my dilemma were in the distant past, many lives in the making. Or maybe I was just making it all up. Either way, I was impressed by the creativity that can be released by having a lucid dream.

Heather was once, and Hilary.
Shameless vixens helping themselves to the cosmic stew.
Joyful, never mindful of where or when they came or went.
God, how I envied them. Then, and

Seven lives we wandered the back country,
Me and my guitar or dulcimer or harp
Or whatever was the instrument in vogue that century,
Ever warning and scolding them for being so fancy free.

And when they'd return from their jaunts to Faraway
And trysts with the local governor or deity
(For they were never ones to carry on with the lower classes)
There I'd be, ready to heal their hearts and bodies,
To nurse their infants and wipe the runny noses of the ragamuffins later,
After they'd grown a bit.

Faithful ever. Like a dog was I.
Longing to risk but not.
Pouring out my love and frustration on the strings.

Well, now, isn't it time for a change?
So where are the Heathers and Hilarys for me now?
Risk I do.
My own children do I love and care for.
But the music is locked in my heart.
This time. This life.

I can't remember whether or not I'd seen Susan Blackmore's book "Beyond the Body" when I had my dream. You might be interested to know that, at the beginning of her first OBE, Blackmore was listening to music, which put her into an altered state of consciousness. Then she moved slowly into a scene in which she was thundering along a road as though in a carriage drawn by several horses.

So, I suspect that my dreaming self was tapping me on the shoulder and saying, "A-hem, Linda. Why are you wondering about an out-of-body experience? You're already having one!"

Blackmore, Susan. Beyond the Body. (London: Paladin Books, 1983). Wittig, Monique. Les Guerilleres, trans. by David Le Vay. (NY: Viking Press, 1971), p. 89.

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